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Hooper's goal takes Celtic nine points clear

Gary Hooper's goal in the 79th minute helped Celtic to a 1-0 win over third-place Motherwell on Wednesday at Parkhead, allowing the Hoops to move nine points clear at the top of the Scottish Premier League.

Motherwell had a great chance to reduce its deficit in the league, which was six points at the start of the day, when the club was awarded a second-half penalty kick as Kelvin Wilson brought down Motherwell's Jamie Murphy inside the penalty area.

However, Tom Hateley's spot-kick was saved by Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster just a few minutes before the Hoops netted the only goal of the match.

It came from a Georgios Samaras cross that allowed Hooper to stab the ball home at close range 11 minutes from time.

Second-place Inverness is also nine points back of Celtic after the team's match with Ross County was postponed due to poor weather.

Aberdeen finished in a 2-2 draw with Dundee United after Niall McGinn scored on a free kick early in the second half, while St Johnstone is sixth after a 1-0 triumph against last-place Dundee thanks to a goal from Liam Craig.

The other contest on Wednesday saw St Mirren and Kilmarnock finish in a 1-1 draw as both teams scored goals from the penalty spot.